Monday, April 25, 2011


Since my last post there has been a lot of change in my life that has left me feeling very much like a statistic and reeling in the wake of so much uncertainty. In February I was notified that I would soon be joining the ranks of those who had been downsized. While this wasn't a total surprise considering the lack of economical upturn at my office and some other trends I had noticed, it was still a shock that it was happening now. I was just a few weeks shy of my 11 year anniversary with the company.

A few weeks later (while still working), I found out that my beloved cat O'Malley was diagnosed with GI cancer. She had been having health problems since October and it just seemed like one thing after another--long lasting double ear infection, severe constipation & vomiting, and a resurgence of her gum disease that called for a good teeth cleaning. When the lymph node in her neck refused to go down and her weight continued to drop we did a lymph node biopsy. I got the news I was dreading: Her lymph node tested positive for cancer. O'Malley, estimated to be about 11 years old, has been with me for the past 9 years. It was just the two of us for the first few months in our new home of Memphis. She's been my comfort in times of great stress and sorrow. She's been my constant companion when I felt the most alone and unsure. And now, she had been given a terminal prognosis: just 3-6 months. Since chemo would not get rid of her cancer and only extend her life a few months but with considerable discomfort, I decided that I would honor her aversion to all things vet/needle related and treat her with steroids to help manage the pain. Now, two months after hearing the news on February 21, 2011 she is shrinking before my eyes. My only comfort when I trace her protruding spine and haunches is that she continues to purr defiantly and maintains an impeccable grooming schedule.

After much thought along with ever changing scenarios and after a short time of unemployment, I accepted a job transfer that would bring me back to Boston. Due to the short notice (just over a week to relocate back to New England) and the small issue of not only owning a house in Memphis but being woefully underwater, it was decided that I would join the ranks of the Boomerang Generation. Moving in with my parents is quite an adjustment. This house has never been my home. It has been almost 20 years since I lived with my parents full-time because I lived with my grandparents for a year before starting high school at a boarding academy and then off to college and out on my own. These first three and a half weeks have gone by quickly. It almost doesn't feel real yet. The lack of personal space feels like I'm on an extended family visit. The long week days of leaving the house before 7a and not getting home until over 12 hours later mixed with weekend visits to friends and camp give the impression that this is just a place to rest my head at night and do laundry. I feel no ownership of the room with a twin-trundle bed I sleep in--until recently, a playroom for the grandkids-- surrounded by piles of my belongings and framed photos of my nephews.

There is still a lot of uncertainty to be worked through including the possible sale of my house and consequentially how long I will need to remain a Boomerang Kid. As families are always a complicated mess of loving each other and yet being some of the most frustrating people to deal with, the other pressing question is: how long before it all implodes?